Vehicles Guide

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DrivingSpiffo.png
Spiffo knows all about driving vehicles.
Vehicles are a form of driveable transport found in Project Zomboid and located throughout Knox Country. They can be found outside homes and in parking lots.

Types

Vehicles come in three different types, along with parts which can only be installed in their corresponding vehicle type. A Recipe magazine must be read before the player can add, remove or repair parts.

  • Standard
Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models
  • Heavy-Duty
Laines Auto Manual - Commercial Models Laines Auto Manual - Commercial Models
  • Sport
Laines Auto Manual - Performance Models Laines Auto Manual - Performance Models

There are currently 9 different vehicle models available, however there are multiple variants from branded, like the Fossoil Chevalier D6, to emergency, like the Police Chevalier Nyala. Vehicles belonging to a certain profession will have relevant items spawn inside. For example, an Ambulance may contain medical supplies.

Controls

Many of the vehicle controls can be customised in the game options. The controls displayed below are the default key-bindings.

  • Pressing V will bring up the vehicle's radial menu – the vehicle's radial menu can be accessed from inside the vehicle or when standing adjacent to the vehicle. When sitting inside the vehicle you will be granted access to the ignition, car radio, headlights and more. When standing near the vehicle you will have access to opening, closing and locking the doors and trunk along with other features. An open door will allow you to access the inventory on the seats.
Vehicle Radial Menu Vehicle Radial Menu Exterior
  • Pressing N will start or shut off the engine. Pressing W inside the vehicle will also start the engine, if it is off.
  • Pressing E will enter or exit the vehicle, though be sure to get in on the driver’s side for a swift exit.
  • Pressing F will toggle the headlights.
  • Pressing Q will sound the horn.
  • Pressing O will bring up the heater controls.
  • Pressing U will bring up the Vehicle Mechanics menu.

Car Keys

Car keys will only grant access to a specific vehicle. They are required to start the engine, unlock doors, unlock the trunk and use the accessories on the dashboard.

They can found:

  • On the ground in parking lots near the vehicle.
  • Inside storage containers in nearby houses.
  • Inside the vehicle in the ignition, glove box, etc.

A key icon will appear over your character if they are in close proximity to the vehicle while possessing its key, indicating that it can be accessed and driven.

Player has the vehicle's key

Hot-wiring

If the car key can't be located, a vehicle can be hot-wired if the player has the required skills of: 1 electrical and 2 mechanics. Hot-wiring will change the ignition key slot icon on the dashboard and display the key icon above all players when they approach the vehicle. Therefore, a hotwired vehicle can be accessed by anyone, which may not be desired on a multiplayer game.

To hotwire a car, you must use the radial menu, where the "Start Engine" option will be replaced with a "Hotwire Engine" option. Other methods of starting the engine such as clicking on the ignition key slot or pressing "w" will not work to start the vehicle without a key.

Locked doors can be accessed by smashing the window or removing it from within the vehicle's mechanics menu. A failed attempt to hotwire will not damage the vehicle or screwdriver but may attract unwanted attention. Engines with a higher quality, are harder to hotwire.

Tools

Item Description Classname
CarJack.png
Jack
Used to removed tires, allowing access to brakes and suspension. Base.Jack
LugWrench.png
Lug Wrench
Used to remove tires, allowing access to brakes and suspension. Base.LugWrench
TirePump.png
Tire Pump
Used to inflate tires Base.TirePump
Wrench.png
Wrench
Used to remove large parts: hoods, trunk lids, doors. Base.Spanner
Smallscrewdriver.png
Screwdriver
Used to remove small parts: batteries, windows, radios. Base.Screwdriver

Vehicle Mechanics Menu

The Vehicle Mechanics Menu displays information about various components of the vehicle. It displays the condition of all the parts within the vehicle, shown in a gradient from green (100%) to red (0%) – whereas a part that is missing will flash red. This information can be accessed by pressing E at the front of the vehicle, using the vehicle radial menu or by right-clicking the vehicle opening the context menu.

VehicleMechanics.png

  • The main display shows the durability/condition rather than the quality rating of the part. Batteries and gas tanks have an additional quality, which is the power or gasoline remaining and is displayed in the upper right details section.
  • Certain parts are prone to wear and tear. Tires, suspension and mufflers can be damaged with normal use. A random chance of damage will occur when the vehicle is moving more than 10MPH. Other factors considered are: current speed, whether the vehicle is on or off road, the vehicles off road efficiency, steering angle or pitch, how long the vehicle has been running.
Taken from lua code in Vehicles.lua: vehicle:getCurrentSpeedKmHour(), vehicle:isDoingOffroad(), vehicle:getScript():getOffroadEfficiency().
  • Engines have different horse power ratings, loudness and quality.
  • Mufflers have a noise multiplier. An old muffler will give a higher rating than a performance muffler.

Engine quality

  • Engine quality (do not confuse with its condition) is determined on vehicle creation and cannot be raised by any means; it mainly affects chance to start engine and its power. Maximum is 100.
  • Emergency vehicles (ambulance, fire, police) usually have 90-100 engine quality.
  • Chance to fail engine start on each try is 30 / (quality + 50) * 100% ;

for example, 65 quality engine has 30 / (65 + 50) * 100% = 26% chance to fail start.

  • Engines with 100 quality skips aforemented check, but still has 1% to fail start due another one.
  • Engines with quality 65 or less, get extra chance to fail, if weather is too cold.

Installing/Uninstalling Vehicle Parts

To install or uninstall a vehicle part, the part must be in the player's inventory or an accessible container. Unlike other occupations, a specific mechanics skill is not required to install or uninstall parts, instead the player must learn the recipe by reading the recipe magazine corresponding to the vehicle. A higher mechanic skill will increase the chances of installing/uninstalling the part without damaging it, the recommended skill is shown in the vehicle's info panel. Vehicle parts for a certain type will not be compatible with other vehicle types. For example, a heavy-duty wheel cannot be installed in a standard vehicle.

While in the Vehicle Mechanics Menu, right-click the part that needs to be installed/uninstalled and select "Install" or "Uninstall".

There are three major part subtypes in addition to the major vehicle type (Standard, Heavy-Duty, Sports).

Part Subtypes Vehicle Types
CarTire.png
Tire
Valu-Tire
Regular Tire
Performance Tire
Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
CarBrakes.png
Brake
Old Brake
Regular Brake
Performance Brake
Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
CarSuspension.png
Suspension
Regular Suspension
Performance Suspension
Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
CarGastank.png
Gas Tank
Small Gas Tank
Standard Gas Tank
Big Gas Tank
Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
CarTrunk.png
Trunk
Small Trunk
Standard Trunk
Big Trunk
Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
Windshield
Windshield
Windshield
Rear Windshield
Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
Side Window
Side Window
Front Window
Rear Window
Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
CarDoorFront.pngCarDoorRear.png
Door
Front Door
Rear Door
Double Rear Door
Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
EngineDoor.png
Hood
Hood Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
EngineDoor.png
Trunk Lid
Trunk Lid Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
CarSeat.png
Seat
Standard Seat
Big Seat
Sports Seat
Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport
CarMuffler.png
Muffler
Old Muffler
Average Muffler
Performance Muffler
Standard
Heavy-Duty
Sport

Repairs/Replacements

Author's note: In cases, where there are mutliple methods available, each one is written as method a), b), c) and so on.
Each item is required from each marking. (Everything beginning with "a)" is required for method "a)". )

Part Tool Recipe Item Skill
CarSeat.png
Seat
Screwdriver Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models Seat Mechanics 2
Radio.png
Radio
Screwdriver - Radio -
CarGastank.png
Gas Tank
Screwdriver
Wrench
Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models Gas Tank Mechanics 5
CarBattery.png
Car Battery
Screwdriver - Car Battery -
CarMuffler.png
Muffler
Wrench Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models Muffler Mechanics 5
CarTire.png
Tire
Jack
Lug Wrench
- Tire Mechanics 1
CarBrakes.png
Brake
Jack
Wrench
Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models Brake Mechanics 3
CarSuspension.png
Suspension
Jack
Wrench
Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models Suspension Mechanics 3
EngineDoor.png
Trunk Lid
Repair:
a) Propane Torch
b) Propane Torch
c) None

Replace:
Wrench
Repair:
-
Replace:
Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models
Repair:
a) Metal Sheet
b) Small Metal Sheet x2
c) Metal Sheet, Screws x8

Replace:
Trunk Lid
Repair:
a) Metalworking 1, Mechanics 2
b) Metalworking 1, Mechanics 2
c) Mechanics 2

Replace:
Mechanics 3
CarTrunk.png
Trunk
Propane Torch - a) Metal Sheet
b) Small Metal Sheet x2
Metalworking 3
Mechanics 2
EngineDoor.png
Hood
Repair:
a) -
b) Propane Torch
c) Propane Torch

Replace:
Wrench
Repair:
-
Replace:
Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models
Repair:
a) Metal Sheet, Screws x8
b) Metal Sheet
c) Small Metal Sheet x2

Replace:
Hood
Repair:
a) Mechanics 2
b) Metalworking 1, Mechanics 2
c) Metalworking 1, Mechanics 2

Replace:
Mechanics 3
CarWindshield.png
Windshield
Screwdriver Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models Windshield Mechanics 5
CarWindshield.png
Rear Windshield
Screwdriver Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models Rear Windshield Mechanics 5
SideWindow.png
Side Window
Screwdriver Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models Side Window Mechanics 3
CarDoorFront.pngCarDoorRear.png
Door
Wrench Laines Auto Manual - Standard Models Car Door Mechanics 4
LightBulb.png
Headlights/Taillights
Screwdriver - Light Bulb -

Specialty Repairs

  • Engines require the player to have the car key, or to have hot-wired the vehicle, in order to repair or obtain spare engine parts SpareEngineParts.png.. Removing parts will reduce the engine durability to 0 even if no parts are received. An engine can be repaired to 100% but may require additional spare engine parts.
  • Trunks cannot be swapped or fully repaired. They can be repaired with glue, duct tape, metal sheet or small metal sheet (requires metalworking skill).
  • Heaters are not repairable or swappable.
  • Radios can be swapped with a standard household radio found in game.

Dashboard

VehicleDashboard.png

  1. Enginetrouble light.png Engine Light - turns engine on or off.
  2. Battery light.png Battery
  3. Outside Temperature
  4. Doorslocked light.png Door locks - Locks or unlocks doors.
  5. Headlights light.png Headlights - Turns lights on or off.
  6. Heating light.png Heater/AC - Turns Heating or Air conditioner on or off.
  7. Trunk light.png Trunk Lock - Locks or unlocks trunk.
  8. Ignition light.png Ignition - Key storage slot. Key can be left in ignition engine off.

The indicators on the dashboard have three primary colors.

  • Grey: off
  • Green: working/enabled/on.
  • Orange: starting.
  • Red: broken/disabled/off.

Refueling

A vehicle can be refueled by right-clicking on it and selecting "refuel", the option to "siphon gas" is available if the player has an empty gas can. Vehicles can be refueled using a gas can or at a gas pump, provided the gas pump is connected to a power source. If the option to refuel from the gas pump does not appear, the gas cap may be too far away from the pump; try repositioning the vehicle so that the gas cap is on the same side as the gas pump, most vehicles have gas caps on the driver's side.

  • Fossoil gas pump
  • Gas-2-Go gas pump